Word of Mouth
In a time filled with constant annoying 20 second interruptions, fifty million foot long billboards, and seemingly 2 page spreads of the same old advertised junk presented over and over I have to wonder to what length will we stop? Maybe when we’re in the delivery room waiting for our children to pop out the hospital room speaker will be chirping out the best baby ointment on the market or perhaps as we’re perusing the spicy items at a local Thai restaurant the menu electronically spouts on about fast-acting heartburn medicine. With the digital era breathing down our necks the opportunities and possibilities of advertisers to dig their claws into our lives are endless. What needs to be in order is a reflection on the marketing industry at a whole and take a quick consideration on the most successful way to catch the consumers attention: through other consumers. Natural word of mouth is a beautiful thing and moves mountains as far as spreading the wealth of popularity around for a product or business.
Just down the road of my hometown is a small restaurant that is almost impossible to find and has barely any advertising to even indicate where it is. My mother knew about it from a friend and invited me to tag along. Approaching the place I thought it was more of a speak easy than a restaurant, it was disguised by an abandoned building that practically hid it from the rest of the world. Stepping in I was genuinely surprised at the amount of people dining there. The place was packed and the waitress told me that they weren’t even really busy compared to how they usually are. I was amazed and boggled but most importantly I felt a sense of revelation. Here I was so desensitized to the modern humdrum of the constant flow of advertising that I was left completely unaware that places I had never heard of are flourishing just as well if not better.
The reason this restaurant had proven so successful is that all the would-be money that mainstream businesses would spend on getting the word out was properly spent on the quality of the product (in this case the food). This illustrates the main point that if a business wants to attract a significant following, they have to trust that the consumers will follow based on the quality on the product, not the quantity of how many times people have heard of it. This is a lesson that is soon being forgotten but I hope that some people make the same revelation I did and go back to the roots of genuine publicity.